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|GoErie: Giant Step Foward|
|Posted on Wednesday, October 16, 2013 at 8:01 AM|
Radio frequency cancer treatments pioneered by the late John Kanzius, of Millcreek Township, did what they were supposed to do in recent medical trials. The treatments killed cancerous cells and tumors in animals.
And pigs, treated with Kanzius-inspired equipment made by Industrial Sales and Manufacturing in Erie, got healthier.
And while they were getting better, they kept eating and remained healthy.
Those results, announced Tuesday morning, represent a giant step forward for a potentially cancer-curing device invented by the late John Kanzius, an Erie radio station owner who began experimenting with radio frequencies as he battled cancer himself.
"It works," Mark A. Neidig Sr., executive director of the Kanzius Cancer Research Foundation said.
"This is the news we have been waiting for," he continued. "The world is waiting for the verdict and our researchers say, 'It works.'"
Tuesday's announcement was a decade in the making. It was in the fall of 2003 that Kanzius came up with the idea to use directed radio waves to kill cancer cells.
Later research would show that cancer cells could be targeted by using gold that would attach itself to cancerous cells. After Kanzius died of pneumonia in 2009, testing in small animals would show that the Kanzius device would kill pancreatic cancer cells.
Neidig said the success of trials with large animals brings the technology one step closer to being used by human cancer patients, and a step closer to the inventor's vision.
"John always envisioned a better, less toxic way to treat cancer," Neidig said.
Even after years of research, Steven Curley, M.D., lead investigator for the Kanzius Project at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, continues to be surprised by the capabilities of the device.
In prepared comments presented by Neidig, Curley said researchers have found they can use powerful blasts of radio frequency without side effects.
"It does not cause heating of normal tissues; it doesn't cause damage of normal tissues," Curley said. "Test subjects are having no side effects or toxic effects from the RF treatment."
Nine successful months of testing with large animals led Tuesday to the announcement that Curley will now seek permission from the Food and Drug Administration to begin human trials.
Curley is hoping that it might happen as soon as early 2015.
Neidig said a first round of human trials would most likely be conducted in Houston and would be focused on the safety of the treatment.
A second, larger phase would include eight to 10 trial sites and between 50 and 75 patients, and would be used to determine both the safety and the efficacy of the treatment.
Neidig said he remains hopeful that both Erie and Fort Myers, Fla., the two cities in which Kanzius split his time, would be considered as likely locations for phase 2 trials.
That was a promise Curley made to Kanzius and he plans to keep it as long as he is leading the project, Neidig said.
He also announced that ThermMed, a partnership formed by Kanzius with a group of experts to help patent his ideas, has been sold to another company. The name of that company was not immediately available.
"The new company will help support the research, but they are also very goal directed in getting in front of the FDA," Curley said.
, Erie Times-News